By now, many of us are inwardly responding with “blah, blah, blah” when we hear all the hype about the epidemic of obesity. We see it all around us in our daily lives because obesity is one of those disorders that is out there in plain sight. It is worn out for the world to see.
There is a strong emotional component to obesity that often gets less attention because of how at risk an obese person’s health becomes. But prior to all the physical harm which takes its toll over time, there is the teasing and taunting and the battering of self-esteem and of self-regard. There is the endless inner berating that comes from wondering ‘what is wrong with me?’ ‘why can’t I control myself?’ ‘why can’t I be more like everybody else?’ ‘why am I so broken?’
It doesn’t take rocket science to realize the detrimental impact this type of self talk does to a person’s sense of worth and esteem. Not only does this cause the emotional torment, but where is a person who has turned to food for emotional reasons in the past going to go when they feel emotionally battered? Right back to the food, their solace; their safe haven. And so the cycle continues.
According to present-day research, there are more than 90.5 million (that’s MILLION) Americans who meet the medical diagnosis of obesity. 12.5 million are children. THAT is why there is so much talk about the obesity epidemic. The research proving the connection between obesity and increased heart problems and diabetes is overwhelmingly indisputable.
The out of pocket costs of obesity are insane, justifying in excess of $3 million dollars annually for celebrity endorsements of major weight-loss programs. But the macro concern is that of health costs of obesity to insurances and the government. Predictive costs are through the ceiling and needless to say, that gets people’s attention.
I have to wonder, how many people who suffer from being overweight keep track of what they eat during the day. Although there are so many different plans and programs available, I don’t think any one of them works more effectively than mindful accountability.
None of us is being force fed. We are eating because we choose to eat. And while economics play a huge factor in the healthfulness of the types of food we can afford, the portions can always be smaller. We don’t have to eat as much today as we did yesterday and for many of us, that can be the first step to taking control back over something that we have given up control to.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Judy is a licensed clinical social worker and has worked extensively as a counselor with children, adolescents, couples and families. Judy’s professional experience in the mental health field along with her love of writing, provide insight into real-life experiences and relationships. Her fresh voice and down-to-earth approach to living a happier, more meaningful life are easy to understand and just as easy to start implementing right away for positive results!